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French baguettes. Photo credit: Sergio Artze

French president’s winning baker hates France

Makram Akrout, winning baker of the Best Baguette in Paris in 2021 and future official supplier to the French President, filed a complaint after the revelation of "hate" and Islamist messages on social networks that he allegedly supported.

Published: October 2, 2021, 10:24 am

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    Akrout, a baker of Tunisian origin, won the traditional competition for the Best Baguette in Paris and obtained the right to deliver his bread to the Élysée Palace for a year.

    Following this victory, the baker has repeatedly said that this award was “a great pride” and “no coincidence”. Makram Akrout arrived in France in 2002 without paperwork and was naturalized. He has been in the business for 19 years, he says.

    A few days after the announcement of the results of the competition, some Twitter accounts unearthed messages from Makram Akrout’s Facebook account in 2019-2020, reported French daily Le Parisien.

    Written in Arabic and reposted on Facebook by a user named Makrem Akrout, these messages imply that the user supports the ultra-conservative Tunisian Islamist party. He shared conspiratorial ideas claiming that France wanted to “colonize” Tunisia and supported the petition to “fire” the French ambassador at the time.

    “Mr. Akrout told us that his Facebook account had been hacked”, said Franck Thomasse, president of the bakers of Greater Paris and one of the members of the competition jury. His lawyer, Me Sylvia Lasfargeas, denounced a “nauseating” campaign mounted by “the extreme right”, adding that Makram Akrout disputed these “screenshots”.

    Following these revelations, the baker decided not to receive his prize on October 2 in person. For her part, the leftist mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo, who will present the prize, “hesitated”, but will ultimately be present.

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